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I'm looking for something identical to what command-k does in a terminal window on a Mac.

clear / ^L does not work.

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Could you be more specific? Not everyone will know what command -k does on a Mac. – Keith Aug 30 '11 at 21:44
@Keith, it clears the scroll-back buffer of the terminal application. – Zoredache Aug 30 '11 at 23:51

The ⌘-K is a feature of the Terminal application that clears the scroll-back buffer of the terminal, the shell/application you are running in the Terminal doesn't do anything.

What Terminal are you using on Linux? Are you at a console, you using putty, xterm, xfce4-terminal, gnu-screen, or something else? Each terminal has different features, some can clear the clear away what is on your screen, and some cannot. Without knowing exactly what terminal you are running there is one way to tell you the command.

Here is the methods I know for a couple terminals you might use either on Linux or for accessing Linux.

  • Putty
    • Right click -> clear scrollback
  • GNU Screen
    • C-a C
  • XFCE4-Terminal
    • Terminal Menu -> Reset and Clear
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What about just directly accessing the terminal from the console? – Dirk Sep 1 '11 at 1:36
AFAIK, there is no way to clear the screen on the console. My suggestion is that you learn to love gnu screen. It is an extremely useful tool – Zoredache Sep 1 '11 at 2:01

Right click and select Reset Terminal while tailing the file. This will clear the terminal screen and you will still be tailing the file.

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